Skip to main content

News | Minnesota Vikings –

Muse, Sims & Thompson Show Trust Vikings Have in TE Group

MINNEAPOLIS – The Vikings opened the game in 11 personnel with one running back, one tight end and three receivers, but three tight ends wound up combining for more than half of the team's receiving yards.

Nick Muse caught three passes for 46 yards, Ben Sims added two receptions for 38, and Colin Thompson totaled 31 yards on his two receptions.

Muse's long gain of 20 yards was an impressive catch-and-run in the second quarter. Muse took a short pass from quarterback Nick Mullens, broke two tackles, and bulldozed into Titans territory.

"I sat in the split and was waiting on the ball. I felt pressure to my left, so I knew if it was gonna be thrown, it was gonna be to my right. And I was very tired on the play, so I was lucky to slip out of there and get an extra 10 or 15 yards," Muse said. "But Mullens has trust in me. I tell him we are like yin and yang. So, if he keeps throwing me the ball, then good things will happen."

The tight ends combined for seven catches for 115 yards on a night when Minnesota's pass catchers totaled 200.

"I'm a big fan of Muse. He's a great person on and off the field. He's underratedly talented. A great teammate and a great player. We have good chemistry," Mullens said. "And he's versatile, and that brings value."

Mullens connected with eight different targets on 13 of 23 passing for 151 yards. His long pass of 33 yards came via a deep corner route to Sims. Mullens faked a handoff in the first quarter before bootlegging right. Keeping his eyes downfield, Mullens fired a dart to a twisting Sims, who made the catch late in the first quarter.

It was the longest offensive play of the game for Minnesota. Before the big catch, Sims laid a critical wham block setting up a 7-yard inside run by Ty Chandler on first down.

Sims wore No. 81 on Saturday but was No. 49 in Week 1 of the preseason versus Seattle. He switched when the Vikings needed to assign 49 to recent addition Tanner Vallejo, a linebacker.

"Now that he's 81, you could put him out there in a wide receiver alignment, and you know what you're going to get," Muse said of Sims. "He can run a fade ball. He can run a slant, and he can run anything a tight end can do. I'm excited to see how he's matured his game."

Two plays later, Mullens found Muse for 11 yards, setting up a 45-yard Greg Joseph field goal, his first of three second-quarter field goals. A tight end caught a pass on two of the three Vikings second-quarter scoring drives.

Rookie quarterback Jaren Hall relieved Mullens to start the second half.

View game action photos from he Vikings vs. Titans preseason Week 2 game at U.S. Bank Stadium

Late in the fourth quarter, Hall drove Minnesota into the red zone. On a third-and-goal from the 4-yard line, Sims drew a pass interference on Titans defender Tyreque Jones. Running back DeWayne McBride punched in the 1-yard score on the next play.

Hall finished 4-of-7 passing for 49 yards. He gained 14 yards on two rushes, was sacked once, and quarterbacked the team's lone touchdown drive.

The Vikings played without top tight ends T.J. Hockenson, Josh Oliver and Johnny Mundt, as most starters were inactive. But for a second consecutive preseason game, the Vikings tight ends are making a case for being the team's deepest position.

"The trust in this room is passed down," Muse said. "It starts with Kirko [Kirk Cousins] trusting T.J. [Hockenson] a lot when he is out there, and Johnny Mundt and all the boys. So when the tight end room gets its chances, we try to make the most out of them. So when Mullens and Hall were trusting us today, we feel like we did the job."